Offered a Free Trial? Mastercard Will Now Block Unwanted Future Billing.
Now merchants will need approval before charging you
Ever sign up for something via a free one-month trial … and then completely forget about it until your first (or fifth) bill arrives?
Of course you have. Now, there are workarounds, like the one-time, disposable credit card numbers created by apps like Privacy. But for an everyday option that doesn’t require yet another download, you can actually now use Mastercard.
The credit card just introduced “rules for merchants that offer free-trials to make this a hassle-free experience for their consumers.” What it means for you: Those merchants will have to get approval from you via email or text after the trial period ends if they want to continue billing you (and having you as a customer), as long as you’re using your Mastercard to continue the transaction.
Once the merchant sends you the transaction amount, payment date, merchant name and “explicit” instructions on how to cancel a trial, they’ll still have to send you a receipt for each transaction payment afterwards … with, again, clear instructions on how to cancel your service. The merchant’s website and/or physical store phone number will also appear on each cardmember’s statement.
Basically, this is a really good time to try Hulu, Spotify, Netflix or any other service for 7-30 days without worrying about your future bills.